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KTM250 RFS - Oooops!

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Jun 2, 2001
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#1
English magazine reviewed two models - a pre production in England then a launch model at the 2002 Official launch in France.

Both were very similar: Great suspension, poor engine.

KTM : "The 250RFS is an entry level bike not aimed at the Yamaha WR250F" ???????

Engine reported as weak low down, a narrow mid range hit then a poor top end. The XR250 is recommended as a better 'entry level bike'.

2002 EXC125 was directly compared and was a much better bike.

The mag recommends calling the RFS something other than an EXC because the bike is so disapointing and uncompetitive!

KTM won't launch till end of 2001 or maybe even 2002. Maybe they won't launch at all !!! Midnight oil burning in Mattighofen? Who knows!

Price will be £4995 in the UK, a little less than the 400 and 520.
 

CC_RIDER

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#3
What mag was that?

Any idea if there is an online version?

I've heard it said that the engineer that designed the 400 & 520 RFS's was killed in a crash and that a new designer was brought in for the 250. But how could the engine be that bad? Surely they would have used a similar design, just smaller bore & stroke. If that is the case, surely they could get the performance better thru different carburation, valve size/timing, ignition timing, compression levels, etc.

I'd like to read the review.:think
 

Alex

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#4
250 RFS

:D Heard on the Eurotek KTM site, that they may drop the 2001 250RFS , all new 250RFS bike is on the drawing board, new light weight frame, new high revving engine. At 5' 5" I cant wait for the 250RFS, looks like a 125 or 200 EXC will have to tide me over until 2003.
 

marcusgunby

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#5
The engine doesnt perform because its based on the 400.Too big an engine for the CC.
 
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#6
The English magazine is absolutely brilliant but not available on-line. Its called "TBM" for 'trail bike and enduro magazine'. They are well connected and seem to get invited on all bike launches. They also have a reporter/writer based in France who gets first hand info on what the Frenchies are doing - one of the hotbeds of enduro events and bike modifications in Europe.
TBM subscriptions telephone: England 0207 903 3993 or fax 0208 840 4760. The issue is no. 72.
The ISSN number is 1359-0324 if that means anything to your local newsagent!

The 250RFS is currently a sleeved down version of the 400 and 520. KTM engineers state that because of this 'no more power to be found due to frictional losses'. The engine looks big for a 250 in the KTM frame, it looks the same size as the 400/520.

Giovanni Sala (top French Enduroist) has been campaigning the bike in the World Enduro Champs but made no headway due to the lack of power from the 250RFS. The results were: 1st+2nd WR250F and 3rd Husq.
Because Sala didn't finish top three, maybe KTM will start over again!
 
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#7
If it's not aimed at the YZ-f or WR-f; and instead it's a beginner bike, then I don't know about dropping the "EXC" name, but I certainly wouldn't call it a "Racing Four Stroke" -- isn't that what the "RFS" means? Doh! :o
 
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#8
250 rfs

French magazines Moto verte and Motocrampons have tested the 250 rfs and have done timed comparison with numerous other bikes.....Although the little KTM felt slow lap time were about midpack....there was 250 2strokes and 400 4 strokes against it .....it was as fast as the WR 250f on an enduro track (more east coast than desert ) all tester liked the small RFS for tight ,nasty trails .It weigh no more than a yamaha(despite carrying a starter) and the engine ,if basically similar to the 400/520 is eavily modified with different crank,cylinder,primary drive and carb... Don't count it out rigth now it may feel slow next to a 520 but it seems to be a real good bike for nasty condition ......Time will tell... i'll wait for complete test of the production version then we will see if my girlfriend will ride a EXC125 of 250RFS....
 
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#9
Mr Sala did comparison tests with the 250RFS and EXC125 and found them to post similar lap/test times. This was with the benefit of his year riding and developing the RFS. He says that the power is not good enough to challenge the WR250F.
Latest rumours would suggest that the 250 has gone back to the drawing board for a re-think. After all, this is a matter of pride for KTM, they will want a winner straight out of the box.